Birthday Cake Help

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Joined May 6, 2001
My son will be three on the 21st of April and I'm planning an "elmo" themed party for him. I'd like to do the cake myself, but I'm not quite sure how to accomplish it without it looking cheesy. What I'm going for is a basic head cut out-it's basicaly a football shape and three circles. Would you make a few rounds and then cut shapes from that, or a rectangle 9x13x2 cake? The cake will be feeding about 12-15 people and I'll be transporting it to a second location for the party. I know that Wilton makes an "elmo head" cake pan but I really don't want to buy a pan that will only be used once. For those of you who don't know what elmo looks like here is a link.
:)
 
2,938
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Joined Mar 4, 2000
Yes, it definitely makes more sense to create the shapes on you r own, rather than buy the pan for one use. You will waste the least amount of cake by baking a round cake and a few cupcakes.

Cut Your cardboard to the proportions you will be needing, then cut your cake according to the cardboard shape. Fill afterwards, so you don't waste filling as well.
 
2,938
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Joined Mar 4, 2000
PS-
You only have to bake cupcake-sized cakes if you intend to make the cake 3 dimensional. I think it can look very nice without doing that, though. I hope to hear how it turns out.
 

isa

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Joined Apr 4, 2000
Some stores here rent their mould for a few dollars a day. Might be worth looking if this service is available in your area.
 
579
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Joined May 6, 2001
Thanks for the help.
Momo, I think I will go with the cupcakes and round cake. I'll try and post a picture of the finished product.



While I'm thinking of it-I've heard that a nice true "red" is sometimes hard to achieve in frosting. I have both the gel and paste colors. Any tips about the best way to mix up a batch of elmo red?
 
2,938
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Joined Mar 4, 2000
A touch of black added to super red will give you a deep red color. Go for the past colors, rather than liquid.
 

isa

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Joined Apr 4, 2000
Do you prefer the paste food colouring to the powdered one Momo?
 
846
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Joined Nov 29, 2001
If you use the pan once or twice, so what? I have pans I know I will only get 1-2 uses out of per year. I still don't regret buying them.

I made a seated dinosoar cake for my daughter's 3rd birthday using a Wilton Bowling Pin Pan. Sure, I won't get too many uses out of it, but all the work was worth the collective gasp when I brought the cake out to serve it.

Practice, practice, practice using pastry bags and make sure you have the appropriate tips. Make some test cakes (for the structure and firmness of the cake) and make some of that nasty crisco frosting to practice with. Make sure no one eats it...LOL.

Paste colors are extremely vibrant. Liquid color is good for coloring Easter Eggs and not much else. You can also experiment with the powdered colors. Do you have any Wilton books? Sure, they can be on the cheesy side, but the instructions for piping are excellent.

Take lots of pix!
 
579
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Joined May 6, 2001
Chiffonade,
I've done a wilton cake before and I have several pasrty tips and cake deco items. I still have the Winnie the Pooh cake pan that I used for my daughter's first birthday. It's not that I'm concerned about wasting money on a one time pan as it is the waste of space in my kitchen.

Momo,
Thanks for the info. I was guessing that I should add some black to the red. It's nice to have an expert confirm it. :)

I'll be sure and take alot of pictures for future posting.
 
1,640
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Joined Mar 6, 2001
I don't really know if Elmo is Disney but theres a site I like for childrens party ideas, it's http://family.go.com/recipes/

It's a Disney site, but it has tons of great info on childrens parties. I remember seeing some really cute simple cupcakes there, they might have Elmo.
 
2,938
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Joined Mar 4, 2000
The reason I prefer paste over powder is that it blends in more uniformly, and is more versatile. You can paint with it as is, or with a little thinning. I haven't used powders much (aside from the dusts), because they sometimes get grainy.
 
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Joined Mar 11, 2002
(I hope this helps) why not try the buttercream transfer. It is really easy to do. You take a freezable glass (I use those acrylic cutting boards) and take the picture from a napking or plate (you can enlarge to the size you want in a copy). Tape it to show through the glass on the textured side (so you can work on the smooth side). Now that you can see the picture underneath the glass, tape a piece of waxed paper on the top side of the glass. Use buttercream icing and do the entire outline of the drawing onto the waxed paper (tracing because you can see the picture underneath it) making sure not to leave any gaps. Fill in each section with the appropriate color icing filling in COMPLETELY - what you see is the back/under side of the drawing - and place in the freezer for 30 to 45 min. then carefully turn the wax paper with the drawing onto the cake and slowly peel off wax paper. Voila! YOu have your Elmo. I did this with my nieces and nephews with Elmo and Hello Kitty, you can send me a message if you'd like me to send you a copy of the pic (I'll try to dig it up). =0) Happy decorating!:chef:
 
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